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Barrie treated to Edge vs Benoit
By JOHN and JUSTIN POWELL - SLAM! Wrestling


Only in Canada, eh? What a pity. Die-hard grappling fans who attended last night's ECW - Smackdown! house show in Barrie, Ontario, were treated to a truly special main event featuring WWE World Champion Edge putting his title on the line against the 'Rabid Wolverine' Chris Benoit.

Unsure of which native son to cheer for, the crowd was split evenly with chants of "Let's go Benoit!" followed closely by chants of "Let's go Edge!" The fact that he grew up in the nearby town of Orangeville did not seem to play in Edge's favour at all. The champ however did receive some applause when he offered to shake Benoit's hand twice and did so without pulling any shenanigans.

Edge's polite streak did not last long though. As Benoit unleashed with some trademarked chops that echoed around the Barrie Molson Centre, Edge halted the assault by tearing a page out of Roddy Piper's rule book and poking him in the eyes. Edge attempted to ram Benot into the ringside stairs but the Irish Whip was reversed and Edge ended up colliding with the steel.

Back in the ring, Edge narrowly rolled out of the way as Beniot went for his Swan Dive Headbutt finisher. A vicious baseball slide sent Benoit careening out of the ring and into the steel barricade. Edge then got a measure of revenge by hurling Benoit into the same stairs he had become aquianted with just minutes before.

With Benoit clutching his ribs and grimacing in pain, Edge locked in a bear hug squeezing for all he was worth. Deafening shouts of "Benot!" and "Edge!" broke out as the two struggled in the centre of the ring. Once Benoit broke free, the battle continued on the top rope and ended with Benoit supersplexing Edge.

As the crowd began to solidly back Benoit, he picked up the pace chopping and elbowing Edge to the mat. After a complete Three Amigos followed by three German Suplexes, Benoit dragged his thumb across his throat and vaulted to the top rope.

A collective "Awwww!" went through the crowd when Benoit's Swan Dive Headbutt only scored him a two count.

The ever crafty Edge pulled Benoit into the steel ring post by the trunks and then went for his Spear. Benoit sidestepped the move and locked in half a Crippler Crossface. Edge managed to seek refuge in the ropes only to then be put into the Sharpshooter. Reaching the salvation of the ropes once again, Edge pulled out a pair of heavily taped brass knuckles from his trunks. As Benoit grabbed him by the hair, Edge whacked Benoit in the skull and stole a three count victory much to the chagrin of the crowd.

ECW - Smackdown! (Barrie, Ontario) House Show Results

CM Punk versus Snitsky

John: Snitsky muscles Punk around. Punk outsmarts the big man with a roll-up.

Justin: It was a so-so match. My favourite part was when CM Punk kicked the big Snitsky right in the face.

Winner: CM Punk at 6 minutes and 43 seconds.

John Rating: 5 / 10

Justin Rating: 6.5 / 10

Funaki versus Mark Henry

John: Same psychology but more humour than the last match with Funaki sticking and moving until Henry catches and crushes him.

Justin: The match was good and funny. I liked it when Mark Henry caught Funaki and gave him the World's Strongest Slam.

Winner: Mark Henry at 2 minutes and 39 seconds.

John Rating: 2 / 10

Justin Rating: 2.5 / 10

Elijah Burke versus Cody Rhodes

John: Elijah works the crowd well by bad mouthing Barrie. He threatens to leave the arena if the crowd doesn't shut up and let him speak. Elijah plays into the "cocky veteran versus rookie" storyline by not taking Rose seriously. The newcomer displays some impressive aerial moves until Elijah injures and works on his knee. Rhodes notches the upset of the night by rolling up Elijah despite his injury.

Justin: I think Cody Rhodes (the new guy) has some spunk. He put on a good show. He did a great splash off the top turnbuckle.

Winner: Cody Rhodes at 10 minutes and 36 seconds.

John Rating: 7 / 10.

Justin Rating: 7.4 / 10.

Chavo Guerrero (champion) versus Jimmy Wang Yang (challenger) (WWE Cruiserweight Championship)

John: Chavo is having a ball in the smaller venue as he interacts with many members of the crowd accepting challenges and countering insults. Although Yang puts up a valiant fight, Chavo blocks an attempted Hurracanrana and lands a Frog Splash for the victory.

Justin: A great match by both competitors. They put on a great high-flying show. I liked it when Jimmy Wang Yang jumped high off the top rope but Chavo did a great Frog Splash.

Winner: ...and still WWE Cruiserweight Champion, Chavo Guerrero at 10 minutes and 25 seconds.

John Rating: 7.5 / 10.

Justin Rating: 6 / 10.

Tommy Dreamer versus Marcus Cor Von (Extreme Rules Match)

John: Kendo sticks and garbage cans come into play with both men pounding on each other. Dreamer gets the better of Cor Von though when he puts one end of a Kendo stick under his throat and rams the other into the mat, spiking him on it. Dreamer Tommy Drivers Cor Von into a table.

Justin: It was so loud when Cor Von hit Dreamer in the back with the Kendo stick. I couldn't believe how loud it was. I wish they had stood the table up when they went through it rather than leaning it in a corner. It was an okay match. They should have had some blood in it because it was a Hardcore match. There was none.

Winner: Tommy Dreamer at 9 minutes and 2 seconds.

John Rating: 6 / 10.

Justin Rating: 9 / 10.

Jillian Hall graces the crowd with her presence and a song. Crystal arrives to drive the harpy away and throw free T-shirts out to the crowd.

London/Kendrik versus Regal/Taylor versus Deuce/Domino (WWE Tag Team Championship Match)

John: Deuce and Domino are content to allow the other teams to beat the crap out of each other. Regal gets mucho respect from the crowd even though he is playing the heel. Another roll-up victory with Deuce packaging up London after the match breaks down into a brawl.

Justin: London/Kendrik flying around the ring like they did was awesome. Regal's suplex on London gave me bone chills when they hit the mat. I love Deuce and Domino and wish they would have wrestled more in the match. They should have come in more instead of standing on the apron for almost the whole match.

Winners: ...and still WWE World Tag Team Champions....Deuce and Domino at 14 minutes 7 seconds.

John Rating: 6 / 10.

Justin Rating: 5.9 / 10.

MVP (champion) versus Kane (challenger) (United States Title Match)

John: MVP is not a happy camper. Why does he have to waste his weekend defending the title in Canada...of all places? MVP: If it wasn't for the United States, you would all be speaking German right now. Funny stuff that. Criticize MVP and his Power Ranger costume all you like. The guy has charisma. He could be another Rock if the WWE would dust him off a bit. Kane plays the role of avenger making MVP eat his words. MVP works on Kane's hand after slamming it into the ring steps. Frustrated, MVP whallops Kane's hand with a steel chair. Much to the crowd's disappointment, Kane gets the DQ win. Kane gets some measure of revenge by chokeslamming MVP after the bell.

Justin: I was disappointed there was no fire or fireworks for Kane when he came to the ring like he usually does. I liked when Kane knocked out MVP with one punch. Kane got too beat up during the match. So much of the match was about MVP. Kane should have fought back more. Kane's chokeslam was great.

Winner: Kane at 13 minutes and 2 seconds.

John Rating: 6 / 10.

Justin Rating: 7 / 10.

Edge (champion) versus Chris Benoit (challenger) (WWE World Title Match)

Justin: I was really shocked that the two Canadian guys were fighting in Barrie. It was a great surprise. It was hard to pick to who to cheer for. In the end, I chose Edge though. I liked that the two Canadians shook hands... twice. I was surprised that Benoit didn't get the one-two-three after the diving headbutt near the end of the match. It was the best match I have ever seen in the Barrie Molson Centre. I would love to see Benoit and Edge fight again in a feud on Smackdown!

Winner: ...and still WWE World Heavyweight Champion...Edge at 20 minutes and 32 seconds.

John Rating: 7.5 / 10

Justin Rating: 10 / 10

Overall Event Rating (John): 8.5 / 10

Overall Event Rating (Justin):10 / 10

John: I was quite pleasantly surprised that the WWE put on such a high quality show at such a small venue. An excellent effort on everyone's behalf. It was a stadium style show in a hockey arena. You cannot ask for better than that. The small venue provided a relaxed environment which allowed many of the wrestlers to really let loose and have some fun. Edge versus Benoit really inspired the local Canadian kids.

Justin: I would go and see another show in the Barrie Molson Centre. It seemed that everyone had a good time. It was a big show in a small place. That was fun. It would have been nice to see Undertaker though.

This is the first combined father-son report on SLAM! Wrestling, and it's fitting that it's by SLAM! Wrestling co-founder John Powell and his son Justin. Let John and Justin know what you thought of their tag team effort at pow2112@hotmail.com.